Paying for EPA cost recovery

If you are issued an order requiring you to investigate, manage, remediate or maintain contaminated land, or you enter into a voluntary management proposal, the EPA will charge you a fee to recover its costs associated with the order or proposal.

People responsible for contaminated land include

  • the business or individuals whose activities caused the contamination
  • landowners
  • ‘notional’ owners, e.g. financiers

Cost recovery fees cover the administrative costs of activities undertaken by the EPA associated with orders and voluntary management proposals, as set out in section 34 of the Contaminated Land Management Act 1997 (CLM Act).

Paying for EPA orders and activities

Orders and proposals include

  • preliminary investigation orders
  • management orders
  • ongoing maintenance orders
  • voluntary management proposals and approved voluntary management proposals

There is more information about orders and proposals in the EPA’s Contaminated Sites Compliance Statement (PDF 664KB).

EPA activities include

  • preparing and serving an order
  • assessing and settling the terms of a voluntary management proposal
  • monitoring actions relating to an order or under an approved voluntary management proposal
  • seeking compliance with an order or approved voluntary management proposal
  • matters associated with these activities, such as meetings, communicating by email or telephone, and legal advice

There are no exemptions for cost recovery fees.

Cost recovery fee rates

The hourly rate for the fee is set under clause 4(2) of the Contaminated Land Management Regulation 2013. It is adjusted on 1 September each year, in line with movements in the Public Sector Wage Price Index.

From 1 September 2018, the fee is $93 per hour as set in the Contaminated Land Management (Adjustable Amounts) Notice 2018 (PDK 27KB).

The total fee charged is based on EPA staff time and any other costs relating to activities associated with administering orders and compliance. You do not have to pay GST.

Making a payment

The EPA will send you a draft cost recovery notice by registered post, to advise you of the fee you owe. If you have concerns about the amount, you must send your comments to the EPA within 14 days from the date you receive the notice. If you have any questions you will find contact details in the notice for an EPA officer who can assist you.

  • If you do not provide comments by the end of the 14 days, you will be issued with a final notice and an invoice.
  • If you do provide comments, the EPA will consider them, and contact you if necessary, before issuing the final notice and invoice.

If a contaminated site is complex, and management and remediation are likely to take a long time, the EPA usually issues a series of cost recovery notices and related invoices throughout the management period.

If a contaminated site is less complicated, and management and remediation are likely to take a relatively short time, the EPA may only issue a single cost recovery notice.

Payments are due within 30 days of the invoice date.

Payment instructions are provided on the invoice.

Page last updated